For years, my friends and I have known that we need to think anew; see from different perspectives; and allow the broken ways to end. However, we are part of ‘systems’, such as family, work organization, school, and community. Most of us tend to operate within the confines of these systems. In addition, it often feels necessary to fit in. This is true even when we have the insights and desire to bring about positive changes.
Thinking anew requires patience, bravery, and trust – trust in ourselves and in something greater than ourselves that supports our learning, growing, and serving. With the recent lock-downs and protests, I question how to see the good that can come out of these events. It is clear that our society is headed down dangerous and destructive paths. However, I didn’t expect the challenges to show up so quickly, so dramatically, and so forcefully.
The hero’s journey is very popular in our culture. I love the stories of people fighting through trials and tribulations. As challenges arise in my daily life, I find myself shocked to realize I had expected the journey to be like a story in the movies. I now understand why I couldn’t stand reading the parts of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings when Frodo and Sam just keep trudging and trudging to Mordor. It is painful to see the demands of courage and how long a struggle for freedom can be.
Okay, it takes patience, bravery, and trust. How about starting with a quote from Buckminster Fuller?
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
A first step is to disengage from contentious conversations in our existing reality. If I cannot accept another’s point of view as their right to hold, or if someone tries to force their opinion on me, I remove the energy of resistance from the interaction. I do not give my power to fighting an old battle in which I do not believe. It is best for me to be polite, kind and respectful. A good response might be: “I do not have the same experience of this subject as you do.”
Often, I hear my words sounding like a platitude or soundbite. Even if they are not, I find that the listener often hears my words as some platitude or soundbite and responds back with their own version. We are caught in a circle of repeating statements that have very little to do with the truth of what is going on in our society today. Admittedly, it is tempting to fall into these behaviors. We find our group of like-minded talkers and support one another in our rightness. It keeps me very, very stuck.
In the Power Peers Network, we engage in meaningful conversations; listen with respect; and allow others to speak from their heart so we begin to see differently. Please contact me to learn more, check out our current offer, and comment below to share your thoughts on how we can think anew.
Thanks for participating in the conversation, Laura